All aspects of our daily life have legal consequences and school library media centers are no exception. According to Yun (2002), library policies, rules and regulations helps reduce possible confrontations among the library users, for instance, parents, staff members, readers and library administrators. Morris asserts that library rules policies and procedures help ensure that people are treated fairly and equitably as far as the use of library materials are concerned (2013). This paper seeks to discuss various legal issues that may arise within a school library media center with respect to legislative issues presented through the Georgia library media association (GMLA).
Access legal issues.
It is worth to mention that, the United States Constitution points out that everyone has a right to access information and ideas. Notably, both public and school library have the responsibility of ensuring that everyone obtains such information. At times, librarians may be required to remove, preserve or withhold certain information that may pose negative consequences for the library users, for instance, offensive books or hate speech. It is important to note that denying access to library information is delicate and should be handled with great caution.
On the other hand, the law prohibits library administrators from unreasonable discriminations within library centers. According to Americans with Disability Act, public providers of services should not discriminate qualified individuals with disabilities by excluding them from participation or denial of certain services and activities. At times, employers find it difficult to employ disabled persons since they require special handling. Georgia school library media center is no exception in this case, and library administrators may discriminate against disabled individuals when it comes to employment. Notably, it is important for the library administrators to consider such issues, to avoid being on the wrong side of the law.
Noteworthy, overdue are a fact of life when it comes to most libraries and Georgia school library is no exception. Imposition of fines to library users is one of the policies of the library which aims at encouraging timely return of library borrowed items (McMenemy, 2010). It is important to note that, legal issues arise when the library takes the necessary steps to collect fines from individuals who breach the contract for borrowing materials from the library. Notably, actual breach of duty occurs when individuals fail to return borrowed materials on time, and this may call necessary legal action by the relevant authorities.
Legal issues pertaining employment.
The Georgia school library employs many people, and as a result, various law issues concerning employment may arise at any time. Some of the key employment legal issues that the library administrators may face include immigration status of employees, employee benefits, and compliance with statutes regarding discrimination. According to the Georgia Security and Immigration Compliance Act established in 2006, public employers should not hire illegal immigrants. Following this act, the Georgia school library should first verify the eligibility of individuals before employing them.
Notably, the library has to pay extra attention when it comes to job transfers or laying off of workers. The Georgia law prohibits public employers from giving transfers or firing employees on the basis of religion, gender, race or ethnicity. In determining such employment actions, the library administrators need to take great care to avoid being on the wrong side of the law.
It is important for the Georgia School Media Library to pay attention to all legal issues pertaining their area of scope to avoid unnecessary fines and penalties by the law. Additionally, adherence to the legislative issues discussed by the GLMA will foster peaceful relations among the library users.